Be Bigger Than Your Challenges

When most people are faced with a challenge or difficulty, they tend to see it as overwhelming and intimidating. They can’t see a way around it, so they just . . . STOP. Stop moving toward their goals, stop striving to improve their lives. They give up and resign themselves to being a “failure.” Is this your typical response to challenges too?

What if you could learn to see challenges in a new way? A way that empowered you rather than made you feel helpless? What if you could train your mind to see challenges as temporary and meaningless? That may sound hard to do, but it’s actually very easy – and fun if you allow it to be.

Here are two approaches that will change the way you see challenges forever:

1) Be like water.

Imagine a stream of water running down a gentle slope. Now imagine someone placing a concrete block in the path of the water. What does the water do? It simply flows AROUND the block and continues down the hill, right? The water doesn’t stop, heave a sigh of frustration and say, “Well, I guess I can’t make it to the bottom of the hill after all . . .” It just continues on its way, pulled along by gravity.

Obviously, you aren’t water; you are an emotional being that can easily become overwhelmed and intimidated, but you CAN borrow some of the characteristics of water the next time you find yourself facing a challenge. Bring to mind this image of water flowing easily around an obstacle in its path. Relax the tension from your body, avoid trying to “force” your way around the obstacle, and instead allow your thoughts to “flow” gently around the obstacle.

Very often, just adopting a relaxed, flexible mind-set like this can call forth spontaneous solutions from your creative side. Even if nothing comes to you immediately, an idea or two may pop in while you are focused on other things.

2) Make yourself bigger.

Challenges and problems always seem to be so much stronger and bigger than we are – but this is merely a perception! One of the best ways to empower yourself in the face of challenges is to perform a visualization exercise that makes your problems appear to be smaller and insignificant. Start by finding a quiet place to be alone, take a few moments to breathe deeply and get very relaxed. Then call to mind an image of yourself standing before the challenge you are facing.

When you first envision this challenge, it will probably seem to be much bigger, stronger, and scarier than you are. Say to it, “I’m much bigger and stronger than you are. I’m bigger and stronger than any challenge. You are getting weaker and smaller by the minute. Nothing can stop me from achieving my goals, including you.” And imagine that you can actually SEE the challenge shrinking, fading, and even disappearing altogether.

Use this visualization daily and you will notice yourself feeling much more empowered as each day goes on.

Keep reminding yourself that challenges are nothing more than opportunities to grow, learn, and step out of your comfort zone. Take them on with passion and enthusiasm, and watch how quickly they fade away! 🙂

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